From Father Steven May 2, 2021
FAREWELL LETTER FROM FR. ADRIANO
Dear Brothers and Sisters of IC Parish,
Tomorrow I will leave for a new mission, to Salvador, BA, Brazil. But first, I would like to say a few words.
As I told you, when I announced weeks ago about my transfer, I am leaving this parish with a sadness and a joy in my heart. Sadness for saying goodbye to the people I learned to love ... and joy for, in faith, leaving for an important and urgent mission, because I know that many divine graces await me there. We are all human and suffer when someone dear leaves. But, in faith, we rejoice in the beautiful and good trail that this person leaves us.
Over the years, I have learned to understand and love you and this nation with its culture. I lived here with you my first years of my priesthood. With you, God has enriched me with knowledge, not only by learning to speak English and Spanish, but to respect and understand other cultures. Above all, I learned to love you by living together the sufferings that life presents us with. On one hand, I love the country that God chose for me to be born, Brazil, on the other hand, I will always carry with me the love, affection and gratitude for this country that welcomed me for eight years, the United States of America. I hope all the best for this beautiful and blessed nation: God, love, faith and freedom. I wish divine blessing for all of you, I wish Christian love, in the dimension of the cross for all who suffer. I wish the necessary faith for you and for this nation and I wish for the most precious prize won by the first fathers of this nation, freedom. I wish freedom for this country so that we can all continue to worship God in this blessed land. I want you to know that there, in Salvador, you will have a friend and brother, a Brazilian-American. Whenever you want to go there, I will welcome you. Just as here in Marlborough I feel at home, there in Salvador you will also have a home.
I want to say that I will be fine there, because I am sure that God is there, in Salvador, waiting for me to welcome me. I also want to communicate and comfort you here that the Cardinal of Salvador, Sergio da Rocha, sent me a cordial welcome email last Saturday, encouraging me of not to be afraid of the challenges of the new mission and to say that the people of Bahia are also very welcoming, as you were for me. I was immensely happy with his letter.
I want to thank God first for the great affection he had for me when he sent me here to this parish 8 years ago. I want to thank our Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley who welcomed me to this Boston Church with open arms. I want to thank the various priests who worked here with me in this parish: Fr. Michael, who welcomed me to this parish for the first time in 2013; to Fr. Alonso, Fr. Marc, Fr. Andrea, Fr. Gregory and Fr. Steven, and Fr. Przemek who have been with me these past few years as true brothers. I want to thank you, who have welcomed me since the day I arrived here. Those from the English-speaking community, those from the Spanish-speaking community, and those from the Portuguese-speaking community, Brazilians.
I end this with the phrase of a missionary like me, who I like very much: "... I will obey God's mandate! I am prepared and ready to suffer everything and with the greatest joy of my heart, for the salvation of the poor Indians" (Saint Francis Xavier).
God bless you,
Fr. Adriano Albino de Castro
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Father Steven Clemence